Tuesday, May 17

Anti-vaccine demonstration and restrictions: another Sunday of violence in Brussels?

A meeting under high tension. While Brussels (Belgium) experienced a day of violence last Sunday, during demonstrations against anti-Covid health restrictions, the authorities fear a recurrence today. A new gathering must indeed take place.

A “march for freedom” is planned, from the North Guard of the Belgian capital. On the posters calling for demonstrations, it is asked for the “dismissal of the government”, because of its management of the Covid-19 pandemic. The anti-vaccine will be there, denouncing a policy that “forces” them to receive doses.

The risk is to see the situation degenerate in the streets of Brussels, as happened last week. While the authorities announced 50,000 people in the street, from many European countries, some went to clash against the police.

Violent assaults on police last week

A particularly shocking video showed protesters throwing a metal barrier over the head of a policeman as he tried to take refuge in a subway entrance. Trucks with logos were also targeted and masked criminals broke down a door at the European Union’s Foreign Affairs headquarters.

Josep Borrell, head of EU diplomacy, had condemned the “destruction and violence” of some demonstrators. Belgian Prime Minister Alexander de Croo told him that “freedom of expression is one of the foundations of our society (…). But our society will never accept indiscriminate violence and even less towards our police forces”. About 70 people had been arrested.

The situation will therefore be extremely tense in Brussels this Sunday, with the fear of seeing these attacks reappear.


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